5 must have WordPress plugins

Whenever we develop a WordPress website we carefully select plugins that enhance functionality without compromising performance. Here are 5 tried and trusted plugins that boost security and help with SEO.

01. Wordfence

wordfence
Site security should be at the very top of your plugin list. Wordfence is a free WordPress security plugin that comes with a Web Application Firewall (WAF) to identify and block malicious traffic. It helps to prevent hacking, malware, DDOS and brute force attacks.

02. Email address encoder

email encoder
Email address encoder is a free lightweight plugin that protects your email addresses from email harvesting robots that automatically browse the web collecting email addresses. It encodes emails in posts, pages, CPTs and widgets into decimal and hexadecimal entities without any need for JavaScript. Beat the spammers with this neat little plugin.

03. Cache Enabler

cache plugin
Cache Enabler is a free lightweight WordPress cache plugin that helps to improve site performance by generating static HTML files to reduce the resource intensive process of database queries. It lowers page load time and time to first byte for a better user experience and a ranking boost. Cache enabler also offers WebP support without any need for JavaScript.

04. Yoast SEO

yoast
Yoast SEO is a free WordPress SEO plugin that helps to boost site traffic. It allows you to configure titles and meta descriptions and set focus keywords to analyze your content for quality and readability and maximise on page SEO. It also generates an advanced XML sitemap that lets Google index your site better.

05. Blogvault

blogvault
Blogvault is a reliable WordPress backup plugin with daily backups stored offsite on secure servers. It is a paid plugin service but worth the peace of mind that should anything go wrong with your site you can restore it to an earlier working version. It also offers a test restore feature so you can check backups were successful.

Speed up your WordPress Site

Page speed has a direct effect on search rankings, and a faster site also improves the user experience of your website visitors. So here are some easy tips to speed up your WordPress website.

01. Optimize your images

smushit
Large images slow down your site frustrating users. Smush is a great compression tool that uses non-lossy image optimization to reduce file size without compromising on quality. It helps to improve page loading time and your Google Page Speed.

02. Optimize your HTML, CSS & JS

Optimize your HTML, CSS & JS
Fast Velocity Minify combines CSS and JavaScript files so your server deals with fewer requests. It works out of the box and requires little configuration. But after installing it, be sure to check your site in incognito mode to ensure it looks great to logged out users. It can conflict with some themes and plugins.

03. Cache your site

supercache
WP Super Cache works by serving up static HTML files of each page on your website instead of processing heavier WordPress PHP scripts, reducing database queries and the load on your server. It helps to improve the speed and performance of your website.

04. Remove slow plugins

usage dd
UsageDD adds a small box at the bottom of your page (only visible to admins) that shows the number of database queries, memory used, time to first byte (TTFB) and the time to generate a full page. It can help you find out which plugins are heavy on resources and slowing down your site.